College writing requires a higher degree of quality and reliability from sources than high school or personal writing. The information you use needs to be accurate, credible, reliable, and timely. No longer can you do a Google search and use the first pages that you find that relate to your subject. You need to use sources written by subject experts or those who have done quality research on the topic.
It is a safe bet that anything from the following list is not appropriate for an essay in a college course.
Evaluating sources involves thinking critically about what you read. You cannot take for granted that anything you read or hear is true and accurate. You have to consider who wrote it, why they wrote it, and often where it was published/presented.
sjfclaverylibrary. Lavery Library - Source Evaluation: Is this information source any good? YouTube.
Keep in mind that your purpose for researching/writing will have an influence on how you evaluate your sources. Consider the following scenarios:
Watch these brief videos to learn about evaluating Internet sources.
You can use several methods to evaluate the sources you find. For any of them, you need to look at who wrote it, why it was written, when it was written, how accurate it is, and whether it is relevant to the topic you are researching.
Following is a brief video on one method, as well as links to other resources on how to evaluate your sources.
The C.R.A.A.P. test is one method to help you evaluate your sources. The following short video produced by the Johnson & Wales University Denver Campus Library will show you what it is and how you can use it.
jwdenver. Evaluating Information Using the CRAAP Test. YouTube. Creative Commons Attribution license (reuse allowed)